Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Tips for Preventing Electric Shock at Home

Electricity is such a normal part of everyday living that its almost impossible to imagine life without it. Electricity can also be quite dangerous if not used properly. It can cause serious injuries through electric shocks or even death. Here are a few tips for safety when using electricity in the home to prevent electric shock.

Avoid water

Water is a good electrical conductor, but it does not conduct the electricity through a specific channel, it spreads all over. You can be easily electrocuted if you step on a wet floor while an electrical appliance with an exposed wire is on the floor on the other side of the room. Keep all your appliances away from water. Do not use your hair drier or shaver near your bathtub. In case your house gets flooded, turn off the electricity from the main switch before attempting to unplug all the appliances in the flooded area. Avoid operating your electrical appliances when your hands are wet.

Keep the electrical cords out of the way

Another way that people often are electrocuted is through electrical cords traversing the house, especially in high traffic areas. You should keep your cords short and close to the outlet. In case you need to use very long cords, you should consider calling an electrician to install a new outlet closer to the appliance you are powering. Avoid tucking long power cables under carpets or furniture. The wear and tear might damage the insulation covering and expose the live wires inside that will electrocute anyone who touches it.

Keep your appliances in great working order.

First, you should always buy appliances from reputable brands that are accredited for great quality and high safety standards. Use your appliances as recommended by manufacturers to prevent malfunctioning. In case your appliance stops working properly or starts making unusual noises, you should get it repaired immediately. Your chances of being electrocuted are often higher when the appliance is faulty.

Use outlet covers

If you have small children or pets in the house, you should use outlet covers to prevent them from tampering with the electricity outlet. The outlets are direct sources of live electricity and it is very easy to be electrocuted at the outlet. The outlet covers are usually difficult to remove for children or any animals that you may have around the house.

Circuit breakers and fuses

In case you live in an old house, it may not have Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCI), which is a standard in most new construction homes, especially in areas where water will be in close proximity to the outlet, like kitchens. The GFCIs shuts down power instantaneously to prevent electrocution. You should also have the right size and wattage rating circuit breakers and fuses. Be careful when buying replacements for these to ensure that they match the specifications of the circuit to be used in. You can also get advice from an electrician if you are not sure of the right ones to buy.

Posted by: Blackstock Electric  

Friday, March 18, 2016

Is Your Electrician Qualified for the Job?

An electrician is the professional who fits and repairs electrical circuits and wiring in your home. They can also install and maintain household electrical equipment. You know how dangerous electricity can be; electrical shock has sometimes proven to be fatal, not to mention the risk of electrical fires and equipment damage. This is why it is crucial to ensure that the electrician you hire for the job is fully qualified and equipped to handle the task. So how can you tell that the electrician is qualified? Here are a few things to keep in mind.

Formal training
Anyone with a high school diploma can begin formal training to become an electrician. There are various technical schools that offer courses in electrical engineering. The International Brotherhood of Electrical workers or IBEW offers an apprentice training program for interested candidates as well, which takes about four years. Your electrician should have at least one of these two forms of training in their list of qualifications to show that they have indeed received formal education on electrical work. Another form of qualification, although not very popular, is training by the U.S armed forces when enlisted into the army. Such electricians often continue with electrical work even after completing their service in the army.

Work experience
Most electricians typically start off as “helpers” working with more experienced electricians. This work training experience enables them to learn the ropes about real work sites, electrical safety, the various tools and other electrical construction methods. In most large companies, these apprentices often start off by delivering materials to job sites allowing them to learn about the large assortment of tools and materials available in the electrical industry. These electricians eventually progress into the job site, under the supervision of master electricians.

Licensing is crucial for any electrician to operate legally. Most areas often have formal licensing procedures that even determine the level of operation of the electrician. One or more state, country or city licenses are the basic requirements to operate as an electrician and the jurisdiction of operation. Licensing is also a good show that the electrician has met the minimum amount of documented time spent working in the trade in order to be eligible for the license exam. At least 6,000 hour minimum time requirement is necessary for licensing. You can be assured that a licensed electrican has some form of work experience.

NEC certification

The Natioonal Electric Code or NEC is the benchmark of safety in electrical design, installation and inspection to avoid electrical hazards. Licensing authorities and electrical wiring inspectors often use the NEC for electrical code enforcement. You want an electrician who is an expert in the NEC. Any form of certification or credit for NEC testing is a good indicator that you are working with an electrican who can meet the required electrical safety and installation standards. If your electrician meets all these criteria, you can trust them to do a fine job.

Posted By: Blackstock Electric  http://blackstockelectric.com/

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Ways to Prevent Electric Shock at Home

Electricity is such an important resource in the house that it is almost impossible to imagine life without it. About 85% of appliances in the house all rely on electricity to function. Electricity can also be dangerous if not used the right way. Many people often suffer electrical shock in the home and the results may be worse for small children or even pets. The following are a few tips to keep you safe from electrical shock in the home:

Always be conscious about your safety
Never through caution to wind when dealing with electrical circuits or anything electrical. It is crucial to maintain all the necessary safety precautions at all times because electrical shock can kill. Follow the instructions and cautions given on your electrical devices, never hurry through electrical projects and call a professional whenever you are unsure about something.

Shut off the power
You should always shut off the power before you start working on anything electrical. When the circuit is energized, it is quite easy to get electrocuted. You should unplug any device before unscrewing it open. Even after turning off the circuit, you still need to check if it is indeed off before touching anything, as the switches may be faulty. Use an electrical tester (you can find these from your local appliance store) to check if the circuit is still energized. If the light comes on, you definitely need to recheck the circuit for any connections.

Use insulated ladders
When working on electrical wiring in hard to reach areas, always use insulated ladders instead of aluminum ladders. Avoid any conductive material in general. Today you can find insulated fiberglass ladders that do the job quite well.

Avoid working on anything electrical in wet condition
Water is an electrical conductor and can cause serious electrical shock when it comes into contact with an energized circuit. Dry your hands properly before touching or working on anything electrical. You should also avoid working in wet areas. If your house is flooded and you need to switch off the power in the basement on lower areas of the house, wear rubber boots and gloves. The insulation will prevent you from getting electrocuted.

You should consider getting a ground fault circuit interrupter for your tools and appliance. The GFCI will shut off the circuit if the current starts flowing along unintended paths such as water.

Warning labels
You may think you have enough electrical experience to get through life without reading warning labels and this can be a huge mistake. You should always read warning labels on electrical devices for your own safety. You should also place warning labels for others to see when working on anything electrical. Without placing a warning label, someone else could turn on the circuit in the split second that you step away from your work area. What follows can be a seriously devastating accident. Warning labels save lives and they should not be taken for granted.

Posted By: Blackstock Electric   http://blackstockelectric.com